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Grant Thornton Botswana celebrates annual Global CSR Day and Tshwaragano Primary Schools 40th anniversary

Audit, accounting and tax firm supports educational facility in Old Naledi

Old Naledi – For many years, Grant Thornton Botswana (a member firm of Grant Thornnton International Limited – GTIL) has been committed to making a difference in people’s lives and giving back to the local community through various Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities. “GT (Growing Together) in the community” is a core pillar of their global strategy and also the basis of their annual “Global CSR Day”. On this day, Grant Thornton member firms all over the world engage in community service and collectively celebrate giving back to worthy causes in their respective communities.

In 2017, Grant Thornton Botswana pledged to support Tshwaragano Primary School, that houses over 1,100 children from the area of Old Naledi. In 2018, Grant Thornton continued its support and donated items to the value of P50,000 during its annual “Global CSR day”. This donation comes at a time when Tshwaragano Primary School is celebrating its 40th anniversary. When receiving the gifts, the head teacher Ms Spanky Kelopang stated that she was grateful for the support of Grant Thornton, and appreciates the second visit from the accounting firm.

She mentioned that previously the academic performance of students had declined, however in the last year results have improved and she was certain that with the kind of support that Grant Thornton is giving, the results will indeed improve further. She gave an update that the photocopier that Grant Thornton had donated last year has helped in ensuring provision of individual notes and examination papers and fulfilling many other school needs, and further mentioned that this has raised the enthusiasm of the students.

Grant Thornton Managing Partner Mr Kalyanaraman Vijay stated that he was happy to hear about the progress since last year and further confirmed the organization’s commitment to supporting the school to improve students’ results. He presented the beneficiaries with the donation which include PSLE revision books, library books, educational games, boxes of sanitary pads for female students, signage and plaque to brand the school, goody bags, and trophies, certificates and school bags for their 40th anniversary prize giving celebration – all to the value of P50,000. To make the day special for each of the 1,100 students and teachers, the entire staff of Grant Thornton took time off work to spend the day with the students painting the reception classes, engaging in life skills training, playing games, singing and celebrating the spirit of togetherness.

 

Grant Thornton has had an inclination towards supporting educational and life skill development causes, and has previously extended their support to organizations such as Gamodubu Primary School, Pudulogong Rehabilitation and Development Centre, and Dinaletsana Developmental Centre to name a few.

Grant Thornton is also an Authorized Training Employer endorsed by the Botswana Institute of Chartered Accountants (BICA), and provides sponsorship and training to student perusing professional qualifications such as BICA, ACCA, CIMA, CIA, etc. This year, Grant Thornton Botswana also supported Grant Thornton Kenya’s effort for raising funds for Katani Secondary School, by sending 6 management representatives to part take in the Mount Kenya climb.

Grant Thornton offers a number of services including assurance, advisory, tax, outsourcing and corporate services.

About Grant Thornton in Botswana: Grant Thornton Botswana is a member firm of Grant Thornton International Limited. Previously known as ‘Acumen Associates’, Grant Thornton has been operating in Botswana since 1976. Grant Thornton has advanced from a traditional audit, accounting and tax practice and now offers a broad range of services to privately held businesses, public limited companies and the public sector. With offices in Gaborone and Francistown, and innovative service offerings such as outsourcing, transfer secretarial and audits in the field of IT and control assessment, Grant Thornton offers a full range of services to help clients of all sizes address the challenges and opportunities for growth.

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Masisi to dump Tsogwane?

28th November 2022

Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) and some senior government officials are abuzz with reports that President Mokgweetsi Masisi has requested his Vice President, Slumber Tsogwane not to contest the next general elections in 2024.

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African DFIs gear to combat climate change

25th November 2022

The impacts of climate change are increasing in frequency and intensity every year and this is forecast to continue for the foreseeable future. African CEOs in the Global South are finally coming to the party on how to tackle the crisis.

Following the completion of COP27 in Egypt recently, CEOs of Africa DFIs converged in Botswana for the CEO Forum of the Association of African Development Finance Institutions. One of the key themes was on green financing and building partnerships for resource mobilization in financing SDGs in Africa

A report; Weathering the storm; African Development Banks response to Covid-19 presented shocking findings during the seminar. Among them; African DFIs have proven to be financially resilient, and they are fast shifting to a green transition and its financing.

COO, CEDA, James Moribame highlighted that; Everyone needs food, shelter and all basic needs in general, but climate change is putting the achievement of this at bay. It is expensive for businesses to do business, for instance; it is much challenging for the agricultural sector due to climate change, and the risks have gone up. If a famer plants crops, they should be ready for any potential natural disaster which will cost them their hard work.

According to Moribame, Start-up businesses will forever require help if there is no change.

There is no doubt that the Russia- Ukraine war disrupted supply chains. SMMEs have felt the most impact as some start-up businesses acquire their materials internationally, therefore as inflation peaks, this means the exchange rate rises which makes commodities expensive and challenging for SMMEs to progress. Basically, the cost of doing business has gone up. Governments are no longer able to support DFIs.

Moribame shared remedies to the situation, noting that; What we need is leadership that will be able to address this. CEOs should ensure companies operate within a framework of responsible lending. They also ought to scout for opportunities that would be attractive to investors, this include investors who are willing to put money into green financing. Botswana is a prime spot for green financing due to the great opportunity that lies in solar projects.

Technology has been hailed as the economy of the future and thus needs to be embraced to drive operational efficiency both internally and externally.

Executive Director, bank of Industry Nigeria, Simon Aranou mentioned that for investors to pump money to climate financing in Africa, African states need to be in alignment with global standards.

Do what meets world standards if you want money from international investors. Have a strong risk management system. Also be a good borrower, if you have a loan, honour the obligation of paying it back because this will ensure countries have a clean financial record which will then pave way for easier lending of money in the future. African states cannot just be demanding for mitigation from rich countries. Financing needs infrastructure to complement it, you cannot be seating on billions of dollars without the necessary support systems to make it work for you. Domestic resource mobilisation is key. Use public money to mobilise private money. He said.

For his part, the Minster of Minister of Entrepreneurship, Karabo Gare enunciated that, over the past three years, governments across the world have had to readjust their priorities as the world dealt with the effects and impact of the COVID 19 pandemic both to human life and economic prosperity.

The role of DFIs, during this tough period, which is to support governments through countercyclical measures, including funding of COVID-19 related development projects, has become more important than ever before. However, with the increasingly limited resources from governments, DFIs are now expected to mobilise resources to meet the fiscal gaps and continue to meet their developmental mandates across the various affected sectors of their economies. Said Gare.

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TotalEnergies Botswana launches Road safety campaign in Letlhakeng

22nd November 2022

Letlhakeng:TotalEnergies Botswana today launched a Road Safety Campaign as part of their annual Stakeholder Relationship Management (SRM), in partnership with Unitrans, MVA Fund, TotalEnergies Letlhakeng Filling Station and the Letlhakeng Sub District Road Safety Committee during an event held in Letlhakeng under the theme, #IamTrafficToo.

The Supplier Relationship Management initiative is an undertaking by TotalEnergies through which TotalEnergie annually explores and implements social responsibility activities in communities within which we operate, by engaging key stakeholders who are aligned with the organizations objectives. Speaking during the launch event, TotalEnergies Operations and HSSEQ, Patrick Thedi said, We at TotalEnergies pride ourselves in being an industrial operator with a strategy centered on respect, listening, dialogue and stakeholder involvement, and a partner in the sustainable social and economic development of its host communities and countries. We are also very fortunate to have stakeholders who are in alignment with our organizational objectives. We assess relationships with our key stakeholders to understand their concerns and expectations as well as identify priority areas for improvement to strengthen the integration of Total Energies in the community. As our organization transitions from Total to Total Energies, we are committed to exploring sustainable initiatives that will be equally indicative of our growth and this Campaign is a step in the right direction.

As part of this campaign roll out, stakeholders will be refurbishing and upgrading and installing road signs around schools in the area, and generally where required. One of the objectives of the Campaign is to bring awareness and training on how to manage and share the road/parking with bulk vehicles, as the number of bulk vehicles using the Letlhakeng road to bypass Trans Kalahari increases. When welcoming guests to Letlhakeng, Kgosi Balepi said he welcomed the initiative as it will reduce the number of road incidents in the area.

Also present was District Traffic Officer ASP, Reuben Moleele, who gave a statistical overview of accidents in the region, as well as the rest of the country. Moleele applauded TotalEnergies and partners on the Campaign, especially ahead of the festive season, a time he pointed out is always one with high road statistics. The campaign name #IamTrafficToo, is a reminder to all road users, including pedestrians that they too need to be vigilant and play their part in ensuring a reduction in road incidents.

The official proceedings of the day included a handover of reflectors and stop/Go signs to the Letlhakeng Cluster from TotalEnerigies, injury prevention from tips from MVAs Onkabetse Petlwana, as well as bulk vehicle safety tips delivered from Adolf Namate of Unitrans.

TotalEnergies, which is committed to having zero carbon emissions by 2050, has committed to rolling out the Road safety Campaign to the rest of the country in the future.

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